Sponsor: Ahmed Zewail Endowment Fund established by Newport Corp.
Citation: For his creative study and deep understanding of ultrafast dynamics in nano, molecular, and hybrid materials and interfaces.
Current position: professor of chemistry and Howard Family Chair in NanoScience, Columbia University
Education: B.S., chemistry, Fudan University; Ph.D., physical chemistry, University of Texas, Austin
Zhu on what he hopes to accomplish in the next decade: “What I hope to accomplish will most likely be very different than what I will accomplish. Every research project has turned out to be different than what I outlined in my research proposals and has been full of big surprises. While I focus on fundamental problems of technological or societal importance, such as solar energy conversion, my research path has so far been a random walk guided by my love of solving puzzles.”
What his colleagues say: “Xiaoyang has done pioneering work applying ultrafast spectroscopy techniques to energy materials applications. He is among the most creative, ambitious, and successful researchers in ultrafast science at present, both in terms of the novel experimental techniques employed, and in his role in uncovering new understanding of energy and nanomaterials and interfaces, with potentially significant societal as well as scientific impact. He is also a great mentor for the students and postdocs working in his group.”—Henry Kapteyn, University of Colorado, Boulder, and KMLabs
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